RE: What's a good versioning system for Office documents?

Subject: RE: What's a good versioning system for Office documents?
From: "Andrew Warren" <awarren -at- synaptics -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2006 12:56:05 -0700

Lou Quillio wrote:

> Have you considered whether locking is so important? Let's say
> that James and Kirk check-out `Manual.doc` for editing at more or
> less the same time. James, who finishes first, commits his back
> as part of changeset 51. A little later, Kirk commits his back
> in changeset 52. It obviously doesn't contain James's changes.
>
> Tiberius notices that this has happened -- there are only five
> people in the group -- and it's trivial for him to check-out both
> versions 51 and 52, merge them *in MS Word* (applying some
> necessary judgment), and commit back version 53.
>
> Let's think about Tiberius.

Let's pray for the poor bastard, and let's be thankful we don't
have to work where he does.

After about the second time that he has to merge documents in MS
Word (or after the first time he mistakenly DOESN'T merge, or at
the moment he realizes that someone else could check-out WHILE
he's merging), Tiberius is going to threaten to quit unless the
group implements strong file locking.

> Seems as though it's hoped that file-locking can replace all need
> for communication. But can it? Is that even wise?

The question isn't whether file locking can replace all need for
communication, but whether communication can replace all need
for file locking. I think the answer's "no"... And actually, I
think your scenario presents a good argument FOR locking: In a
small group, it should be easy to arrange things so that multiple
writers don't need simultaneous access to the same file.

-Andrew

=== Andrew Warren - awarren -at- synaptics -dot- com
=== Synaptics, Inc - Santa Clara, CA
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